Talking with author Mickie B. Ashling



Thank you for inviting me to share a few moments on your blog to talk about my upcoming release and answer a few questions. 


To get us started can you tell us a little about what you are working on or have coming out?

                Fractured is my 15th novel and part of the Bay Area Professionals series which includes Impacted! and Bonds of Love.  Although set in the same dental universe, it’s not a sequel.  Readers will be able to enjoy this without reading the other two novels.  I would categorize this book as BDSM-light.  It’s less about whips and chains and more about head games and learning how to exchange power without losing oneself in the process.


How would you describe yourself using only five word
s?

                Resourceful, compassionate, creative, moody, and witty.

Do you have any guilty pleasures?

                Sugar in any shape or form. Candy, ice Cream, cakes, and cookies.  I’m surprised I’m not a diabetic because of this guilty pleasure, but there you have it.  I’ve tried to switch over to the pink or blue fakes but they just don’t taste the same.   


If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

                Weather aside, Chicago is a great city and I enjoy living here most of the time.  If I had unlimited funds, I’d buy a house near the ocean in a warm weather state where I could escape the long winter months.


If someone hasn't read any of your work, what book would you recommend that they start with and why?

                I guess it depends on the reader.  If you want some major angst, my Loving Edits series (Loving Edits, Tono, and Momentos: Mick’s Journey) is guaranteed to make you cry buckets.   If you’re looking for smexy fun with a little angst, I’d recommend the Horizons series (Horizons, Taste, Daddio).   Fire Horse and the sequel Ride-Off are set in the rarified world of Polo.   Fire Horse tied for seventh place in the erotic romance category in last year’s Rainbow Awards. 

Coffee, tea or other drink to get you moving in the morning? 

                Tons of coffee with cream and sugar. 

What is coming up from you in 2014? Anything you want to tease us with?

                I’ve recently finished and submitted the fourth novel in the Cutting Cords series.  I thought I was done with these guys, but my character Sloan is such a hot mess, and he was clamoring to be heard.  I’m currently working on my first YA novel which I hope to finish in a few months. 

When you begin your stories, do you go with the flow, or go with an outline?

                I used to go with the flow, but I’m outlining more.  Because I often zig when I should zag, it’s helpful to have a general plan.   

If you were to replenish your cabinets with one junk food, what would it be?
                M & M would be my first choice.   


What do you feel is the most important thing that a first-time author should know? 

                Don’t read your reviews, but if you have to, don’t engage.  Not everyone will like your work.  Be grateful that someone bought your novel and took the time to post a review.  Any kind of review is better than being ignored.  Try and support your fellow writers as much as possible, listen to suggestions and/or advice from those who have more experience.   Don’t take yourself too seriously. 

Has there been any character that started off as supporting character, but then developed into a more prominent character?
               
                My secondary character Lil in my first novel Horizons turned out to be a huge favorite among my readers.  Everyone was asking me to write his story, so a few years later, Taste was born. Lil finds the love of his life at the Taste of Chicago and then Daddio, the sequel, was released a year later. 
 
What has been the defining moment in your career that made you think “Yes, I am now a writer!”?

                I started writing publicly when I discovered the Queer as Folk fandom.  Like many other fans, I hated the ending of the series, and wanted Brian and Justin to have their HEA.  I began reading and commenting on other fan fiction and befriended several writers.  One, in particular, was a huge source of inspiration.  I admired her tremendously and ended up meeting her in person.  She gave me a list of book on writing and encouraged me to try my hand in the genre.  The day I hit submit on my Live Journal blog was the day I truly felt like a writer.  


How do you like to relax after a day writing?

                A few years ago I realized that sitting all day in front of a computer was detrimental to my health.  Shoulder, back, neck, and arm problems began to creep up.  I’d even heard of some writers suffering from blood clots in their legs. I decided to limit my time to four consecutive hours a day, and then try to balance the rest of my time with exercise, and other activities that involve movement.  When I can’t get to the gym I shop or visit with friends and family.  My favorite form of relaxation is reading, but once again, this means sitting down.  Now, I take my Kindle to the gym or listen to Audiobooks so I can kill two birds with one stone.   

If a movie or TV production company chose to produce your books into a series of shows or movies, who would your ideal cast be?

                I love Adam Lambert and think he’d do a great job as Sloan in my Cutting Cords series.   John Barrowman would make an ideal Preston for Fire Horse.  He’s a wonderful actor and absolutely gorgeous.

If you weren’t a writer, what would you be doing?

                I’d be an ambassador of some sort.  I love traveling and learning other cultures.


Author Bio

Mickie B. Ashling is the alter-ego of a multifaceted woman raised by a single mother who preferred reading over other forms of entertainment. She found a kindred spirit in her oldest child and encouraged her with a steady supply of dog-eared paperbacks. Romance was the preferred genre, and historical romances topped her favorites list.

By the time Mickie discovered her own talent for writing, real life had intruded, and the business of earning a living and raising four sons took priority. With the advent of e-publishing and the inevitable emptying nest, dreams were resurrected, and the storyteller was reborn.

She stumbled into the world of men who love men in 2002 and continues to draw inspiration from their ongoing struggle to find equality and happiness in this oftentimes skewed and intolerant world. Her award-winning novels have been called "gut wrenching, daring, and thought provoking." She admits to being an angst queen and making her men work damn hard for their happy endings.

Mickie loves to travel and has lived in the Philippines, Spain, and the Middle East but currently resides in a suburb outside Chicago.

You can contact her atmickie.ashling@gmail.com or leave a comment on her website at http://mickieashling.com or her blog at http://mickiebashling.blogspot.com.

 Fractured
Dreamspinner Press
BDSM Contemporary M/M
Available at Publisher

Bay Area Professionals Series

Roque “Ro” Celdran dreams of a better life, far away from the hand-to-mouth existence of his migrant worker family. He moves to San Francisco to study Landscape Design but finds himself short of cash. Tony, Ro’s identical twin, comes up with a plan to help Ro make ends meet. The BDSM club Tony frequents is looking for gay men to act as submissives to the Dommes-in-training. Ro reluctantly takes the job and falls headfirst into a world he neither understands nor desires.

Lance Roberts is the new doctor at the dental practice started by Scott Gregory and Robin Kennedy. On the surface, he seems to have it all: the Mensa IQ, blond and blue-eyed good looks, and the determination to make it in his competitive field. Underneath lies a frustrated Dom in search of the perfect sub who can handle his obsessive behavior and debilitating need for control.

When Ro ends up in Lance’s dental chair, the last thing either one expects is a physical and mental connection. Ro’s attraction to “White Bread” never pans out, and Lance’s weakness for Latinos always leads to a dead end. Could this time be different? What happens between the two alphas leads to a lot of soul-searching and some surprising conclusions.

Excerpt


Dinner was sitting on the kitchen counter in a brown paper bag. His plan to cook had been derailed by a late afternoon emergency that had turned into an hour-long surgical procedure. He didn’t want to cancel on Ro but knew he’d be too late to cook, so he stopped at a local pizza joint and picked up a large combination and two house salads. Belatedly, he wondered if Ro would be able to bite into the pizza without a problem, but Lance would willingly hand-feed him smaller pieces if necessary. He smiled thinking about it.

He was still smiling when he opened the door and soaked up the sight of the gorgeous man holding a long-stemmed lavender rose. Ro was wearing an inconspicuous white shirt with rolled up sleeves and a button-down collar, but he made it look like something straight off a boutique’s rack. It was definitely the right color to offset his deep mahogany skin tone. Curly black lashes cast shadows on his cheekbones when he looked down to check out Lance’s barely there outfit before handing him the flower.

Surprised by the unexpected gesture, Lance reached for the proffered bud and inhaled the sweet scent wafting from the soft petals. He was stalling to get himself under control. He was at a loss, having never dated before. His roster of pool boys had always been at his beck and call, but they’d never thought to give him anything but sex. The hookups at the BDSM clubs never involved actual dating. No one in the long line of men he’d bedded had ever gone out of his way to do anything romantic, so this gift, simple as it was, hit the mark as surely as cupid’s arrow.

“I’ve never seen a rose this color,” he said lamely. “Thank you.”

“I saw it and immediately thought of your eyes,” Ro said evenly. “Lavender roses are fairly uncommon. They symbolize enchantment, among other things.”

“What other things?” Lance asked softly.

Ro paused for a second, and his cheeks turned a ruddy apricot before he answered. “Love at first sight.”

It would have sounded cheesy coming from someone else, but Lance knew Ro wasn’t the kind of guy who dropped the L word so nonchalantly. There was nothing flirty about him; in fact, the opposite was true. He was deadly serious most of the time, but his face was an open book. Lance could read the admiration and longing in those beautiful brown eyes. It did all kinds of funny things to his stomach.

He leaned forward and let his lips graze Ro’s, then pulled him into the apartment. The door shut with a quiet snick. Lance pinned him against the oak and began peppering him with tender kisses along his neck, ears, and collarbone. There was a faint whiff of cologne Ro must have applied before arriving, one Lance didn’t recognize but enjoyed nonetheless. It was a masculine scent, as understated as the man in his arms but just as enticing. Ro clutched Lance’s ass cheeks through the towel and drew him closer, grinding his stiff cock against Lance’s twin boner. They were close in height so their hips lined up perfectly. Lance began unbuttoning Ro’s shirt, making a mental note that Ro liked his shirts starched and pressed.

The parted fabric revealed a light layer of dark hair that narrowed into an enticing love trail Lance followed with his fingers. He snaked past the waistband and cupped the generous package. “I’ve thought about this all day.”

“Same here,” Ro said huskily. “You’re all I think about.”

“After Sunday night’s big reveal, I was worried you’d run for your life.”

“Not a chance.”

“Willy seems happy to see me,” Lance teased, gliding his thumb over the wet spot.

Ro chuckled. “Willy?”

“Do you have a pet name you’d prefer?”

“Call him whatever you want, so long as he ends up in your mouth.”



Comments

Thanks for having me on your blog, Dawn. Much appreciated!
bigj52 said…
Hi Michelle, I loved learning a little bit more about you. Have read the first few pages of Fractured but wanted to read Grand Adventures first. Excited to see you have another book coming soon. Adam as Sloan, hmmm. Interesting thought. Hugs. Cutting Cords has been one of my faves but who could pick one from the many you've written.

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